Criminal Justice

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Criminal justice students sitting at tables in classroom with text books.
Close up of criminal justice student studying in classroom.
Criminal Justice is an exciting field of study. Stephanie Breach, Faculty
If you have a passion for helping others, the Criminal Justice Program welcomes you! Chris Cozzolino

The study of criminal behavior and law enforcement is more sophisticated than ever before—and at College of Western Idaho (CWI), we are preparing many students to start a career in this exciting field. In our Criminal Justice program, you will discover and appreciate complex issues in legal studies, sociology, political science, psychology, arrest, and search and seizure. Our goal is to prepare you to pursue a career in local, state, and federal law enforcement, court administration, victim services, and corrections.


Program Mission Statement: The mission of the Criminal Justice Department is to provide students a knowledge of the criminal justice system, create inspirational and professional leadership through classroom guidance and real world opportunities, dispel myths, broaden perspectives, produce educated, well rounded, criminal justice professionals, and informed members of the community.

What You Will Learn to Do

  • Demonstrate familiarity with the major components of the criminal justices system, theoretical perspectives of crime causation, empirical findings, and historical trends in criminal justice.
  • Understand basic research methods in criminal justice, including research design, data analysis, and interpretation of crime data.
  • Respect and use critical and creative thinking, skeptical inquiry, and the scientific approach to solve problems related to criminal behavior and mental processes.
  • Understand and apply psychological and sociological principles to personal, social, and legal issues.
  • Weigh evidence, act ethically, and reflect other values that are the underpinnings of the law and criminal justice as a discipline.

Additional Opportunities

In addition to learning in the classroom, the criminal justice program provides students with opportunities such as:

  • Presentations by Guest Speakers
  • Networking with Community Agencies
  • Participation in Annual Social and Human Relations Department Symposium
  • Criminal Justice Club
  • Service Learning
  • Internship

Respectful Community

The College of Western Idaho is committed to maintaining a Respectful Community by providing equal opportunity for all individuals and does not discriminate in services, benefits, or activities on the basis of race, color, national origin, religion, sex, gender identity, sexual orientation, disability status, veteran status, age, or any other legally protected status.  More on Title IX

News and Blogs

Unwrapped gifts will be collected on campus through Dec. 9 to help bring holiday cheer to children in the Treasure Valley.

Congratulations to Senior Coordinator of Course and Curriculum Management, Samantha Grapes, named CWI’s Staff of the Month for September 2021.

Brighten the holiday season for children in the Treasure Valley by donating gifts to the College’s annual Giving Tree.    

CWI’s Criminal Justice program is excited to welcome Dr. Greg Hampikian, founder and director of the Idaho Innocence Project.

Kevin Platts has been named the new Director of Public Safety Programs at College of Western Idaho.

McKenzie Wood has been selected as College of Western Idaho’s Faculty of Distinction for March 2018.